Great Strides

Jul 1, 2003
Outside Magazine

If you're in the market for a long-distance trainer, the MIZUNO WAVE MAVERICK 2 is your personal lace-up Lexus: It's fast, plush, and exceedingly stable. Mizuno extends a light rubber-and-plastic plate from the back of the 11.2-ounce shoe through the arch to control heel strike. This sends your energy forward more smoothly. Deflecting impact are small elastomers—imagine a set of miniature plastic shock absorbers—placed under the heel and across the toe bar. Roll off ten miles in these and you'll groove on how they keep you under control without sapping anything from your stride. ($85; 800-966-1211,
At a paltry 9.5 ounces, NIKE's AIR ZOOM SPIRIDON is the lightest shoe in our roundup. It's also extremely breathable, with a full mesh upper that kept my feet dry during a 90-degree workout. High marks go to the pillowy cushioning of Phylon foam, Nike's version of expanded vinyl acetate, or EVA, in the midsole and outsole. And with the synthetic-leather exoskeleton, which locks your foot snugly in the shoe, the Spiridon is more versatile than a mere racer. ($100; 800-595-6453,

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